A new book on Teaching the Arts is coming soon with contributions from several IoE authors

We are delighted that Suzy Tutchell and Susan Ogier have co-edited Teaching the Arts in the Primary Curriculum.

This comes out May 2021 and is published by SAGE.

Teaching the Arts in the Primary Curriculum features chapters by Stephanie Sharp, Scarlett Murphy and Ali Silby (Poetry and the Arts), Rebecca Berkley (Music and the Arts) and Nasreen Majid (Maths and the Arts) also of the IoE. 

It brings Arts Education sharply into focus as a meaningful, learning experience for children of pre-school and primary age (3-11 years).  Based on many researched case studies, it reinforces the potential for the wide range of physical, mental and emotional development, through learning opportunities that engagement in arts practice facilitates.

It also provides an insight into how by providing spaces in the curriculum for children to engage in the arts, teachers can support children to consider contemporary challenges that face their generation.

Click here for more on Teaching Arts in the Primary Curriculum 

 

Virtual placements for students with special educational needs during COVID-19

Dr Yota Dimitriadi , Subject Leader for the PGCE Secondary Computer Science, along with the PGCE Secondary Computer Science students recently created an online escape room comprising of a set of six lessons. These lessons with supporting videos, interactive games and classroom activities were specifically designed to help a wide range of students with special educational needs, particularly students from The Addington School whose work placements were disrupted due to COVID-19.

The project was part of the Google Education Professional Development Award on supporting cyber awareness for students from special schools to support their transition into the workplace.

The lessons are designed for both ‘in classroom’ and distance learning approaches with a range of scaffolding options that teachers can use to tailor the lessons to their specific students. All the games are available online on the cospace.io platform and have been tested on iMac, PC and iPad devices.

Whilst designed as an integrated series of lessons and activities, teachers may also consider using lessons individually to meet a specific learning objective. Further, access to the original project documentation and code is available through Yota Dimitriadi. 

The project has been a collaboration between the University of Reading, Institute of Education Secondary Computer Science students and The Addington School, Wokingham, made possible by funding and support from the Berkshire Branch of the British Computer Society and Google Education.

Project team:

University of Reading:

Yota Dimitriadi

Emma Harwood

John Mercer

Paul Palmer

Luke Ryall

Jenny Ellis

with support from Adrian Earle, Head of Dept, Furze Platt School

Addington School:

Danny Blatchford

Kelly Chapman

Abi Storey

BA Primary Education with Art Y3 Online Exhibition

By the final summer term, the Y3 art specialists have completed their final placement, assignments and dissertations, and have five full weeks of studio practice leading up to an end of degree exhibition. This exhibition is the culmination of three years of hard work and committed visual research, which is celebrated by friends, families, IoE tutors, the wider university and local community on London Road Campus. With the onset of COVID-19, a term of contemporary, practical and innovative practice had to be re-imagined and transformed into a digital format.

Suzy Tutchell Lecturer in BA Primary Education with Art, said:

“We were determined to create an adapted final ‘practical’ module which would celebrate who the students had become as artist-teachers and ensure the quality of teaching and learning would be intact. It was essential to retain their creative enthusiasm and drive, so that what they would produce online would be testament to their maturing identities and could still be celebrated by viewers, as it would have been in the studio.”

To that end, an alternative term was devised which comprised of online interactive group sessions, small group supervisory tutorials, paired and group critiques and digital sharing via a new website platform. All students and staff set about creating their own online portfolios, which served as a platform to document and exhibit work that was ongoing, as well as the process of making and creating the final virtual exhibition. Some students even tackled the subject of COVID-19 directly in their work, focussing on our environment and natural art forms.

A selection of the portfolios, will also feature on the National Society for Education in Art and Design website, modelling excellent practice for other university art/education departments; this continues to position us as a flagship of excellent art and education practice at national level.

The student’s final sites can be viewed below:

Elisha Harrington: https://www.bulbapp.com/elishajasmine

Esme Weston: https://www.bulbapp.com/thegingerartist

Molly Waring: https://www.bulbapp.com/mollywaring

Freya Lane: https://www.bulbapp.com/freyfrey3

Aaron Duffett: https://www.bulbapp.com/AaronD98

Paige Johnson: https://www.bulbapp.com/Paige-johnson

Imogen Mulvenna: https://www.bulbapp.com/ImogenMulvenna

Bethany Clay: https://www.bulbapp.com/isolationoutdoors

Taya Jarman: https://www.bulbapp.com/tayajarman98

Toby Inchbald: https://www.bulbapp.com/TobyInchbald

Tom Radcliffe: https://www.bulbapp.com/tomradcliffe98

 

 

Professor Brian Richards, Emeritus Professor of Education, said:

I have spent several happy hours browsing the content. I usually go to the exhibition but the online virtual version has the advantage of being more permanent and you can dip in, take your time, reflect and go back for another look and think. Please congratulate the students on a particularly thought-provoking and inspirational collection. I wish I had been taught by people like them when I was at school in the 1960s—it was a rather uninspiring experience!”

The website production took over 6 weeks and throughout the entire process, students were able to dip in and out of each other’s websites, add in constructive comments to make suggestions, acknowledge some outstanding moments and, importantly, appropriate good DIY art ideas in order to learn from one another.

Imogen, a Y3 student, said:

“I actually really liked doing the website and I didn’t find any difficulty in it. I’d chat with Aaron like we were digital buddies rather than studio bay buddies! We all used messenger to make comments – it was buzzing.”

The developing process included the group as a whole attending live artists’ sessions and exhibition tours of galleries around the world. This added a further international layer to the art curriculum by enjoying global ventures on virtual tours and live artists performances in: Hong Kong, New York, Barcelona, South Africa and Sydney. It also fuelled the students’ ideas for their own websites. These were shared with all staff and students at the IoE and across the wider university, including the IoE Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, helping to raise the profile of the London Road studios as a lively hub of art activity – even remotely!

Emily Yearsley, Lecturer in Primary Art Education, said:

“Initially, both students and tutors were disappointed at the prospect of losing out on the exhilaration of the final exhibition but there is no doubt, the impact of what was produced and the process that was undertaken has enriched practice in a profound, thoughtful and reflective way.”

Molly, Y3 student, said:

“I think in the studio, I work with loads of things and then play around, but actually weirdly, I think the ideas I had for this term’s work were possibly stronger because I had more time to think before I did, so there was a lot of more intention and personal input.”

As a result of building on the successful experience of delivering small practical art activities online, Suzy Tutchell has been delivering weekly online art drop-in sessions for Alana House clients (Reading-based women’s community project); it is hoped this will continue throughout the summer and into the autumn term as she seeks a funding source to create a community project with student support and involvement.

Going forward, the adapted online portfolio model has set a new premise for visual/sound assignment work in the future; Y2 art and music students will collaborate over the next academic year to produce a Y2 creative arts digital platform as part of their specialisms in school.

Primary and Secondary School Workers to Benefit from Free Online Courses!

We are excited to announce two new courses for supporting successful learning in schools, one for primary and one for secondary.  

These have been carefully curated by our Online Courses team and online social learning platform futurelearn.com,with the expert guidance of Professor Helen Bilton.

These courses draw on Professor Helen Bilton’s 35 years of experience in teacher training and education, including early years education, outdoor play and behaviour management.

Helen said “teaching assistants play an increasingly important role in the classroom. The courses are easy to participate in and available online so that there are as few barriers as possible to taking part.”

Helen Bilton’s goal in developing these free online courses is to provide  accessible, interactive and educational resources for primary and secondary workers, where they can discover and discuss ideas and examples of good practice with one another.

Helen has designed a range of activities so that Learners leave the course feeling more knowledgeable and ready to try what they’ve learnt within their work.  

Topics include how to manage a classroom and the psychology behind student behaviour. Learners will also hear first-hand from children and pupils about how they explore a learning environment.

Both courses are now open for enrolment by following the link below and will begin on 22 April 2019.

https://bit.ly/2UT9heJ

New IoE film released

We are delighted to announce the launch of our new film!

For those who are interested here’s the script:

Education, education education

It’s the most powerful tool we have

It has the ability to change who you are

Enable you to be whoever you want to be

To stretch you and empower you

It transforms how we think how we feel and how we behave

It can create thriving communities

Unlock passions that you might never have discovered

It changes our contribution to society

Alters the course of your life

And no one can take it away from you.

How we educate the next generation is the key to our future

Not only as individuals but also as a society.

That’s why at the University of Reading we are really committed to developing caring and professional practitioners

Carrying out world leading research

Training you to transform lives.

Become part of our global community and share our passion.

At the Institution of Education we practice what we teach.


This script resonates deeply with us here at the Institute of Education as we want to provide this generation and those to come with the skills to truly develop and succeed at whatever they aspire to.

We asked Professor Catherine Tissot, Head of the Institute of Education for her thoughts on the film and this is what she had to say:

“I’m really proud of this film as it captures the Institute of Education and who we are succinctly.  This film shows the passion that staff here have for what we do best. It means a lot to us here at the Institute of Education and to me personally. My father used to say that education is the most powerful tool we have and that no one can take it away from you. This has stuck with me my entire life and it lies at the core of what we do here. I’ve shown the video to several people now and they all smile and sigh when the little girl says the line.  It really is a powerful statement and she delivers it much better than I ever could!”

You may already know all about our filming this summer, with the images of school visits and film crews on our social media channels.   

Our partners and staff went all-out to help us make this film and are due a big thank you, especially the fantastic partnership schools who helped us film: the Bulmershe School, Maiden Erlegh School and Christ the King Catholic Primary in Whitley. 

Thanks also to two of our talented alumni: Laura Prime, now working as a Secondary Art and Design NQT and Tayla Sutton, a Primary School Direct trainee. 

And very special thanks indeed go to the wonderful pupils who took part – we could not have made such a brilliant film without you!

So check out our film here: https://bit.ly/2BpM50l  and tell us what you think.

To find out more about what’s happening at the Institute of Education, have a look on the website and at our Instagram , Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter accounts.

 

 

 

Helen Bilton – Westminster Forum: Next steps for early years education

Staff at the Institute of Education are often called upon to provide expert comment. They actively campaign for change so that passionate educational practitioners have the best environment to work in and that children continue to develop successfully.

Professor Helen Bilton was invited to London on Thursday 8 November 2018 to give her expert opinion on how to develop the early years education profession at the Westminster Education Forum ‘Next steps for early years education: developing the EYFS profile, assessment and priorities for strengthening the transition to primary education’

Read below what was discussed in Helen’s own words.

**********************************************************************************

Last Thursday I was given the opportunity, alongside seven other panel members to address the next steps for early years education at the Westminster Forum.

Five minutes each isn’t a long time to speak but we covered a lot of ground and interestingly though we didn’t say the same thing, we did in a way.

We each took the subject from different angles but came to the same conclusions which are detailed below:

  • Listen to the experts, not the vested parties;
  • Value children by ensuring the national curriculum fits the early years framework;
  • We need to ensure we have the calibre and number of staff needed to continue with early years education properly;
  • The previous baseline assessment wasn’t workable or appropriate because it ‘didn’t tell teachers anything they didn’t know’.
  • Policy makers need to address poverty in this country and need to ensure families are paid a good wage and live in decent affordable homes;
  • We have a system that heavily values assessment rather than education itself, which needs to change;
  • There are great schools out there achieving great things with children while not having to forgo their principles.

Baroness Perry who chaired the forum was a force to be reckoned with, once Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Schools in England, she questioned how we have a system that trains teachers in one age phase to then be able to teach any age of child. We should value and keep those people who train in early years.

Although the DfE spokesperson couldn’t stay for the discussions after they presented, they mentioned changes that could cut the workload. I do feel if they had stayed however, they would have seen that not one person, audience or speaker, mentioned the high workload, rather they spoke passionately, demonstrating a deep care for children, wanting to preserve a good education for all.

On the other hand, the Ofsted spokesperson did mention self -regulation and that staff in settings need to articulate to inspectors their understanding of the children in their care.

Going forward, I think we all need to continue to speak to anyone and everyone about education using language that talks about children in terms of growth, development and maturity.

As the campaigning group declares, children are more than a score (www.morethanascore.org.uk).   Moreover, we need to be discussing how we make schools ready for children and as a nation we need to consider what the priorities are for children.

Finally, we need to be pushing for quality professional education so all staff are knowledgeable about child development.

All in all, I came away impressed by the level of debate and the measured discussions. The early years sector has room to grow in strength. I feel emboldened to campaign for change.

Check out the forum here https://bit.ly/2zSjL4E

 

 

 

Universal Voices – Bringing singing to all children

Dr Rebecca Berkley, Lecturer in Music Education at the University of Reading started the Universal Voices children’s choir in March 2017.

Rebecca has run children’s and adults choirs for Berkshire Maestros, the Berkshire Young Musicians’ Trust; for Sing Up, Kennet Opera, and Sing for Pleasure, the National Singing Charity. She started Universal Voices so that students training as primary music teachers on the BA in Primary Education (QTS) programme could learn how to run a choir, develop their conducting skills and learn to teach musicianship.  

“I wanted my students to have a conducting placement with an experienced mentor. We teach conducting on our BA Education programme and Masters Programmes but there’s a big difference between conducting fellow students who can read music, and teaching young children in a primary school setting who have mixed abilities and confidence.”

The choir was launched at the Institute of Education Partnership Concert: Songs and Stories in March 2017. With the support of Music at Reading and the Campaign and Engagement Supporters’ Office, this concert brought together 270 children from the Reading area, who sang alongside music education students who also managed the concert. Universal Voices began rehearsals in April 2017 with around 30 children, and membership has risen to 40 as more children joined. The choir has performed regularly at University events like the University Advent Concert, the Big Band Big Lunch, and Alumni Family Funday. In 2018-19 they will present a join concert with Christ Church Choir, and also complete in the Woodley Festival for the first time.

The second Partnership concert in March 2018 was a performance of Britten’s Noye’s Fludde, with Universal Voices taking the roles of Noye’s children, a chorus of 250 children from partnership schools and BA Ed and PGCE students from the Institute of Education taking solo singing roles and playing in the orchestra. The whole event was project managed by second year students who got to work with Music at Reading to manage the concert and led rehearsals with our partnership schools. This performance was nominated for a Reading Cultural award as best Community Project of 2018, and won an Institute of Education teaching and Learning award.

March 2019 will see the next round of second year students lead a concert called Animal Crackers. The University Big Band will lead an animal themed concert featuring creative composing and performing projects from children from local primary schools, and songs from the Jungle Book. 

This Choir is funded though the Campaign and Engagement Supporters’ Office and is free for children aged 7-13 to attend. Contact Universal Voices on universalvoices@reading.ac.uk, and follow us on Twitter @UniRdg_UVoices

 

To find out more about what’s happening at the Institute of Education, have a look on the website and at our Instagram , LinkedinFacebook and Twitter accounts.

At the annual student teacher Research Conference, there was an astonishing range of talent and also a fair hint of nostalgia

Programme Director, Nasreen Majid addressing the conference

The IoE’s annual ATP* Conference featured an inspiring array of our students’ research presentations. As always, there was also a little nostalgia as we waved off our class of 2018 into their bright futures.

These conferences create a stimulating environment in which our final year BA Primary Education (QTS) students can showcase their lively, interesting and thought-provoking research around issues in primary education. Above all, the conference is the culmination of three years of intense hard work.

The key note speaker is always a central part of this special day and this year we were delighted to welcome Dr Diana Sous of the Institute of Education, University College, London, who focused on three diverse Portuguese Early Years settings to illustrate how conceptual understanding of democracy reflect individual school philosophies. 

Our annual ATP conference is a happy day in the calendar, as Programme Director Nasreen Majid hears and sees the fruits of her students’ study and research over the last three years as the students demonstrate the sheer quality and variety of their projects. The research is broad and accomplished and the posters in particular visually appealing and lively. 

Nasreen Majid, Director of the programme, who leads the conference and research output on the BA Primary Education (QTS) course said:

The research project showcase the outstanding contribution to educational research the BA Primary Education (QTS) students undertake with us here at the IOE. Each project is developed with an eye on how the focus will make a direct impact on the students’ practice as a trainee and beginner teacher. The impact is further amplified as the conference is designed as a platform for peer learning for the part 2 students who are just starting their ATP journey. I am so proud of the confidence and authority of students presenting their work, this shows a great insight into the area they have studied and ultimately a passion for teacher education.”

Our key note speaker to the conference, Dr Diana Dos Santos Sousa, Senior Teaching Fellow at UCL, IOE, delivered a timely key note, closely linked to her career trajectory from an early years practitioner to teaching fellow at UCL, IOE. Her presentation used evidence from three diverse Portuguese Early Years settings that illustrated how conceptual understandings of democracy reflect individual school philosophies She noted the tensions of international comparative testing, closely linking this to the upcoming comparative testing for 5 year olds. 

The best ATP candidate was Anna Wheatley, who received The Professor Rhona Stainthorp Prize for outstanding achievement in undergraduate research.

After the ceremonies, everyone was finally able to kick back and relax over a picnic on our London Road campus’s beautiful green quadrangle, enjoying the chance to be together one more time before our fantastic Year 3 students head off into their bright futures.

We are proud of our five presenting students, who did such sterling work at the conference. Congratulations to you all!

The Institute of Education’s BA Education Studies (QTS) offers four specialisms in Art, English, Mathematics and Music. Please click the links for full information.

*ATP = BA Primary Education (QTS) Advanced Teaching Project


The five final year students who were chosen to present their work at this year’s annual conference represent a broad cross section of the type of research undertaken. Here the five are interviewed on their work:

Will Hatton
Project: The extent to which mathematics is enjoyed by higher and lower attainers and the impact of their teachers’ attitudes towards the subject.

Lauren Rose
Project: The perceptions of the social inclusion of children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder: How do the children perceive their relationships with their peers and how does this compare to the perceptions of the adults who work with them?

Bethanie Matthews
Project: What is it about mathematics that causes anxiety for pupils?

Anna Wheatley 
Project: How does music intervention impact the social development of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Ellie Walsh
Project: An Exploration into the Use of Appropriate Children’s Literature to Support Upper Key Stage Two Teachers’ Delivery of the English Writing Curriculum.

 

Discover your future at Train to Teach evening 21 February

Are you considering a career in teaching?

Perhaps you are a teaching assistant, a career changer, or even a qualified teacher looking to return to teaching. Or you may be one of the many excellent teachers trained overseas, looking to enter the UK market – or indeed you may be graduating in Summer 2018.

Whoever you are, you are warmly invited by the University of Reading (ranked 3rd in UK for Education*), TeachSlough** and Upton Court Grammar School in Berkshire to a special evening dedicated to those who wish to find out more about getting into primary and secondary teaching.

The evening will be mainly informal; once you have registered your interest in the event via the link below, please feel free to drop in, meet the team and to find out more!

Join us on 21 February 4.30- 6.30 at Upton Court to discover the fields of teaching opportunities available to you.

TeachSlough** has a wide range of excellent training opportunities for teaching, both in primary and secondary schools. The Train to Teach evening will showcase these prospects and encourage anyone who has an interest in teaching to get to know the field, chat to the experts from both Upton Court and the University of Reading and find out what route would suit them best.

Come along to our event to meet the experts:

  • University of Reading* tutors.
  • The TeachSlough team
  • Specialist mentors from our partnership schools as well as from other local training partnerships

 

Train to Teach Wednesday 21st February 2018, 4.30pm – 6.30pm Upton Court Grammar School Lascelles Road Slough SL3 7PR

Please confirm your attendance via this link

eventbrite.co.uk/e/train-to-teach-tickets-41105941979

For more information, please contact:

Manni Sanghera Upton Court Grammar School Lascelles Road Upton Berkshire SL3 7PR

schooldirect@uptoncourtgrammar.org.uk / www.teachslough.org.uk

 

*Guardian University League Table 2018: University of Reading ranked 3rd in UK for Education

**TeachSlough School Direct Teacher Training is provided in Slough Partnership schools, working together with the University of Reading. All courses lead to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You can also opt to do the PGCE course, which leads to 60 Masters credits. You may be eligible for a salaried place, or a bursary.

 

Coming into the final furlong of your degree? Thought about transforming lives through education? Remembered your alumni discount for further study here?

One of the most attractive career options available to students from almost any discipline is the University of Reading’s own Institute of Education. 

With us you have the advantage of your alumni discount; you can explore the many routes to becoming a teacher; discover short courses that convert your knowledge to teaching power; and engage in a career in one of the UK’s most rapidly expanding fields of expertise. 

Embracing the demands of the 21st century requires educated, engaged and active citizens; individuals with resilience and the confidence to tackle challenges. At the Institute of Education we have the research, the expertise and the passion to help develop you into one of these leaders.

The IoE is ranked 3rd in the UK for Education (The Guardian University League Table 2018), with internationally renowned and award-winning academics. Our highly reputable partnerships with over 300 schools enables us, together, to train the next generation of outstanding teachers.

Come and see us in London Road to find out more – it’s beautiful here!

CONTACT US: Email: ioe@reading.ac.uk, Telephone:  + 44 (0) 118 378 2601